In pictures: British film talent gathers for Cannes send-off

Dominic West, Freddie Fox, Imelda Staunton, Timothy Spall, Mike Leigh and Ben Wheatley are among the stars and filmmakers who joined us to toast the British presence at this year’s Cannes Film Festival at our pre-festival ‘send-off’ lunch.

Pride cast members Joshua Hill, Chris Overton, Freddie Fox, Bill Nighy, Andrew Scott, Imelda Staunton and Liz White

Pride cast members Joshua Hill, Chris Overton, Freddie Fox, Bill Nighy, Andrew Scott, Imelda Staunton and Liz White
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

With the industry looking forward to Cannes 2014 as a particularly good vintage for British film, we hosted a ‘send-off’ lunch at London’s BFI Southbank to celebrate all of the UK films and talent heading to the festival. Among the guests raising a glass were actors Dominic West, Freddie Fox, Imelda Staunton and Timothy Spall, and directors Mike Leigh, Ben Wheatley (Sightseers, A Field in England) and Peter Strickland (Berberian Sound Studio, Duke of Burgundy).

Six British films have their world premiere at the festival, including Mike Leigh’s Mr Turner and Ken Loach’s Jimmy’s Hall in the Official Selection, and Andrew Hulme’s Snow in Paradise in Un Certain Regard. Last year, Clio Barnard’s The Selfish Giant premiered in the Directors’ Fortnight and became one of the most exciting discoveries of the festival, so we’re thrilled that this year programmer Edouard Waintrop and his team have selected three British films to screen – Pride, Catch Me Daddy and Queen and Country – showcasing the rich diversity of our filmmakers. We’re also very proud that five of the films making up the UK tally at Cannes – Mr Turner, Jimmy’s Hall, Pride, Catch Me Daddy and Queen and Country – have been supported by the BFI Film Fund.

Pride cast member Dominic West

Pride cast member Dominic West
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

Pride cast members Andrew Scott and Bill Nighy

Pride cast members Andrew Scott and Bill Nighy
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

Pride cast members Imelda Staunton and Freddie Fox

Pride cast members Imelda Staunton and Freddie Fox
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

Mike Leigh and Imelda Staunton

Mike Leigh and Imelda Staunton
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

Director Peter Strickland (Berberian Sound Studio; Duke of Burgundy) and producer Andy Starke of Rook Films

Director Peter Strickland (Berberian Sound Studio; Duke of Burgundy) and producer Andy Starke of Rook Films
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

Ben Roberts, Director of the BFI Film Fund

Ben Roberts, Director of the BFI Film Fund
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey, BFI CEO Amanda Nevill, and Shane and Timothy Spall (Mr Turner)

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey, BFI CEO Amanda Nevill, and Shane and Timothy Spall (Mr Turner)
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

BFI Film Fund Senior Executive Lizzie Francke, Into Film Chief Executive Paul Reeve, Dark Horse director Louise Osmond

BFI Film Fund Senior Executive Lizzie Francke, Into Film Chief Executive Paul Reeve, Dark Horse director Louise Osmond
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

Chinwe Nwokolo and Gone Too Far writer Bola Agbaje

Chinwe Nwokolo and Gone Too Far writer Bola Agbaje
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

Ed Vaizey, Amanda Nevill and Sightseers director Ben Wheatley

Ed Vaizey, Amanda Nevill and Sightseers director Ben Wheatley
Credit: BFI/Theo Wood

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